Under the Gunn: DC Chapter One Slate revealed

(The announcement is here)

Up, up and away! After holding a private press event, with partner Peter Safran, yesterday at Warner Bros., a visibly giddy DC Studios Co-CEO James Gunn posted a video on Twitter announcing the new DC Studios slate this morning.

There is a lot to unpack to say the least.

“One of our strategies is to take our diamond characters, which is Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and use them to prop up other characters that people don’t know,” Gunn explained yesterday.

Safran added, “To build those lesser-known properties into the diamond properties of tomorrow.”

“So, as many of you know DC has been disconnected in film and television for a long time. Our job, mine and Peter’s, is to come in and make sure the DCU is connected in film, television, gaming and animation,” Gunn began this morning on Twitter.

Emphasizing that “storytelling is king,” Gunn proceeded to list ten new film, television and animation projects that will kick off DC’s Chapter One titled, “Gods and Monsters.” It’s described as a combination of big and known heroes along with lesser-known characters, who may just become big. This was the Marvel formula when it came to introducing obscure characters such as Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Black Widow and Gunn’s own Guardians of the Galaxy films.

After praising upcoming DC films including Shazam: Fury of the Gods, The Flash, which will completely reset the DCU, and Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, which will lead directly into the new DCU, Gunn went on to give us a partial list.

Highlights include a new Superman movie written by Gunn titled Superman: Legacy. The film will be released on July 11, 2025. Give Alexa a reminder now. There will also be another Batman running around Gotham in addition to Robert Pattinson’s take on the Bat, which will remain in its own universe.

The new Batman: The Brave and The Bold will feature the big screen debut of Batman’s son, Damian, a murderous 10-year-old assassin who takes on the Robin mantle.

What made the Geek smile is a True Detective take on the Green Lantern Corp. Titled Lanterns, John Stewart and Hal Jordan will be thrown into a “terrifying mystery” that will lead into a larger story arc.

We can also look forward to a Game of Thrones-style drama set on Wonder Woman’s home island of Themyscira. And an animated series already in production called Creature Commandos.

Watch the entire presentation below:


Here is the initial slate of “Gods and Monsters,” in the order, Gunn hopes it will appear.


Superman: Legacy: The movie featuring Kal-El that Gunn said he is, “having fun writing.” Superman is “the true beginning of the DCU,” according to Gunn. “It’s not an origin story,” Safran said. “It focuses on Superman balancing his Kryptonian heritage with his human upbringing. He is the embodiment of truth justice and the American way. He is kindness in a world that thinks that kindness as old-fashioned.”

Safran added, “James is currently writing it. We’re hoping that he will direct it. It’s not an origin story. It focuses on Superman balancing his Kryptonian heritage with his human upbringing. Superman represents truth, justice and the American way. He is kindness in a world that thinks of kindness as old fashioned.”

Gunn has said that Superman is critical to the DCU’s survival and he seems to be sticking with that POV. We also know from last year’s debacle that Henry Cavill will not be reprising the role of Superman.

“With our stories, we want to take it away from good guy vs. bad guy. There are really good—almost saintly—people and Superman is among them. There are really terrible villains like Gorilla Grodd or the Joker. And then there’s everybody in between them, so there are all these shades of gray which allow us to tell complex stories,” shared Gunn.

The Brave and the Bold will bring Batman into the DCU, but he won’t be played by Robert Pattinson. This take on the Dark Knight will introduce the Bat-Family and follow Bruce Wayne’s attempts to play dad to his new Robin, Damian Wayne. “This is going to feature other members of the extended Bat-Family. Just because we feel like they’ve been left out of the Batman stories in the theater for far too long,” Safran detailed.

Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow: Taking its cues from the recent Tom King-written mini-series, this movie project promises to have a different take than what most think of when the idea of Superman’s cousin comes to mind. “Superman was sent to earth, and he was raised by incredibly loving parents, whereas Kara was in Krypton,” Gunn said at the announcement event. “She was a piece of Krypton that drifted away from the planet and lived there for the first 14 years of her life among horrible situation where she watched everybody around her die. And so she’s a much harsher and more fucked up Supergirl than we’ve been used to thus far.”

No word on if Sasha Calle who plays Supergirl in The Flash will reprise the role.

Gunn didn’t try to hide excitement about The Authority based on Warren Ellis and Bryan Hitch’s comic book series of the same name. The movie will bring Wildstorm characters into the DCU. “One of the things of the DCU is that it’s not just a story of heroes and villains,” said Gunn. “Not every film and TV show is going to be about good guy vs. bad guy, giant things from the sky comes and good guy wins. There are white hats, black hats and grey hats.”

“This is one of my real passion projects,” Gunn noted. “I’ve been working really hard on it with the writers and we’re starting to put together the entire story. This is a big movie. I don’t know how many of you are familiar with the Authority. They’re WildStorm characters. WildStorm was a comics imprint that was bought by DC that I really love. We’re moving a lot of these WildStorm characters into the DCU.

We’re also getting a Swamp Thing movie delving into the character’s origins. 


Creature Commandos: This is described as an animated seven-episode series, written by Gunn, that is already in production. Originally a team of classic monsters assembled to fight Nazis, this is a modern take on the concept. The voice actors have yet to be cast, but Gunn said the new plan is to have characters, and the actors playing them, to move in and our of animation. This will introduce the new DCU.

In the image below (going from left to right), that’s Rick Flag, Sr. He’s going to show up in other stuff. Then Nina Mazursky. Doctor Phosphorus, a Batman villain. Frankenstein—Eric Frankenstein, specifically. The Bride of Frankenstein, who’s the lead. Finally, G.I. Robot and Weasel.

Creature commandos

Waller: A spin-off of Gunn’s own HBO Max hit series, Peacemaker, Viola Davis will return as the ruthless and morally ambiguous head of a government task force. She will team up with members of Team Peacemaker, Gunn describes the series as a “fantastic story that is out of this world.” and It is being written by Christal Henry (Watchmen) and Jeremy Carver, the creator of the Doom Patrol TV series. This is particularly interesting as Waller and her Argus team have always been a thorn in the side of the Justice League.

The live-action Lanterns TV series focuses on Hal Jordan and John Stewart, and replaces the previous show that was being developed by Greg Berlanti.

“It’s going to be with HBO Max,” shared Safran, adding, “as all of our series are that we’re going to talk about today. It is more of a True Detective-type mystery with our two Lanterns. A terrestrial-based mystery—

Gunn chimed in, “that leads into the overall story that we’re telling throughout the different movies and television shows. We find this ancient horror on Earth, and these guys are basically supercops on ‘Precinct Earth.’”

Paradise Lost is going to take place on Themiscyra prior to the birth of Wonder Woman, delivering a Game of Thrones-style story about the all-female society. 

Taking place before Diana (aka Wonder Woman’s birth) Paradise Lost is an origin story of how this society of women came about. What does it mean? What are their politics like? What are their rules? Who’s in charge? What are the games that they play with each other to get to the top? I think it’s really exciting,” said Gunn.

Booster Gold TV series is also being developed, while Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow is based on Tom King’s comic book series and looks set to put a new spin on the character (the series it’s based on followed the hero in space on a mission of revenge; it’s unclear whether The Flash‘s Sasha Calle will reprise the role). 


Though the duo are working on unifying the DC Universe, Gunn admits some stories will stand apart. Matt Reeves’ Batman movies and Todd Phillips’s sequel to the Joker will fall under a banner titled DC Elseworlds.

The Black Superman project, being written by Ta-Nehisi Coates under the previous regime, remains in active development and would also fall under that category. 

Teen Titans Go, the popular and long-running cartoon series on Cartoon Network also falls under that banner, Gunn said. No mention of Harley Quinn which was just renewed on HBO Max.

It’s only the beginning of Gunn and Safran’s 8 – 10 year plan. Back in 1992, 31 years ago, another duo launched a unified DC universe beginning with Batman: The Animated Series and ended with Justice League Unlimited in 2006. That too introduced little-known characters who became household names. Here’s looking at you The Question.

Let’s hope Gunn and Safran enjoy the same success as Bruce Timm and Paul Dini. Up, up and away!

The Geek is a working screenwriter, director and screenwriting instructor.

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